Colliers Grows U.S. Practice with Purchase of London Firm

Colliers International's acquisition of leading London property firm Hatton Real Estate will strengthen its investment and office agency practice in the U.K.
Tony Horrell

Tony Horrell, CEO, Colliers International U.K. and Ireland

Hatton Real Estate Ltd., a leading commercial property specialist in London, has been acquired by Colliers International Group Inc., the latter announced last week. Hatton’s business is concentrated in the “City Fringe” area of Central London, that is, the boroughs (such as Camden, Islington, Hackney and Tower Hamlets) that surround the City of London. Financials on the transaction were not disclosed.

Hatton was founded in 2010 and provides agency leasing (that is, representing building owners), investment, development and tenant representation services. It will rebrand as Colliers International immediately and will relocate in March to a new and expanded office at Morelands, 27 Old St. EC1.

“The City Fringe is now considered to be one of London’s most sought-after commercial and residential districts, and Hatton’s stronghold in the area…will be an excellent fit with Colliers International,” Tony Horrell, CEO of Colliers International U.K. and Ireland, said in a prepared statement.

“The City Fringe market has become known as Tech City and is seen as the epicenter of the U.K.’s digital economy and an important part of the U.K.’s economic recovery,” Horrell told CPE.

Hatton currently employs 11 people and in 2015 turned over slightly more than £6 million (about $8.7 million), while leasing nearly 1 million square feet, Horrell added. Colliers already had two offices in Greater London: the West End flagship office with more than 500 employees and a 15-employee office in the city.

Hatton “will add significant capacity to Colliers’ London offices business, bringing the London Offices transactional team to 46 people,” according to Horrell. In the last 12 months, Colliers’ London Offices team reportedly has transacted more than £2 billion ($2.9 billion) of investment deals and advised on more than 2.5 million square feet of leasing and rent review transactions.

Major recent deals, Horrell told CPE, have included the pre-leasing of 1 Rathbone Square to Facebook for their new London HQ, the largest lease in the West End in 2015; the acquisition of 60,000 square feet on a pre-lease basis for Carlyle Group at 1 St. James Market; and the sale of 95 Wigmore St. for GPE/Aberdeen for a price in excess of £220 million ($320 million).